Federal judge rules troops and civilians can’t be fired for losing a religious exemption request

As President Joe Biden and his administration continue to push COVID-19 vaccine mandates on everyone it possibly can, a Washington D.C.-based federal judge tossed a stick into the spokes of their agenda on Thursday.

According to the Daily Caller, District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly issued a temporary restraining order preventing the Biden administration from terminating active duty military personnel, and civilians, from retaliatory terminations should they file suit against the administration due to claiming a religious exemption from taking the vaccine. 

The ruling comes as both government workers, including the military, and civilians across the country fight to maintain the right to seek legal recourse if they’re denied religious exemptions from taking the COVID-19 vaccination.

“None of the civilian employee plaintiffs will be subject to discipline while his or her request for a religious exception is pending,” the judge ruled, according to Fox News.

A huge win

In addition to her ruling, Judge Kollar-Kotelly, a Bill Clinton appointee, made sure that members of the U.S. military would not be punished after being denied religious exemption requests.

“Active duty military plaintiffs, whose religious exception requests have been denied, will not be disciplined or separated during the pendency of their appeals,” the federal judge ruled.

The case came about after a group of 22 plaintiffs filed a civil suit against the administration, citing, in part, that termination and consequences simply for being denied a religious exemption to a vaccine mandate is blatantly unconstitutional.

Attorney Michael Yoder, who represents the group, said in a statement: “The Biden administration has shown an unprecedented, cavalier attitude toward the rule of law and an utter ineptitude at basic constitutional contours.”

“Thankfully, our Constitution protects and secures the right to remain free from religious persecution and coercion. With this order, we are one step closer to putting the Biden administration back in its place by limiting government to its enumerated powers. It’s time citizens and courts said no to tyranny,” Yoder added.

Religion under fire

The Biden admin and a number of Democrats have recently dialed in on the religious exemptions that, in many cases, are offered to those who use it as grounds to refuse a mandated COVID-19 vaccination.

Many on the left have argued that thousands of Americans will use the religious exemptions whether it’s truly religion-based or not. On the other side of the debate, many experts have stated that questioning someone’s religious beliefs is not constitutional, as opponents of religious exemptions vow to determine just how “religious” a person is.

“Public institutions should not act like inquisitorial boards, quizzing people’s religious beliefs and trying to find holes because somebody has a different view of things,” said Roger Severino, former director of the Office of Civil Rights, according to a previous Daily Caller report.

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